Hey blog world! It’s been a while since I last posted, but I’m back! I would have written more but Christmas is a super busy time of year and to top it all off my laptop was in for repairs as it was constantly freezing and randomly shutting down (don’t you just love technology!) Now, I’m back! A lot has happened lately, so I thought I’d bring you up to speed on what’s been going on!
Christmas. as I said was a busy time. Busy, but lots of fun! I spent several days in the kitchen baking treats! Mom usually does the Christmas baking, but because she was working and had no time this year, I volunteered to do it for her since I would be home all day almost every day. I was looking forward to spending time in the kitchen! I love to bake, but haven’t had much time to do so recently. I made a few old favorites, snowballs and peanut butter mice and decided to try some new recipes as well! Using recipes I found on the internet, I made sugar cookies, gingerbread men and a Newfoundland tea time staple, jam jams!
I owe mom a huge thank you as she saved my peanut butter mice! I completely firetrucked up when I made them! As I coated the mice in chocolate, I set them to dry in an aluminum cookie dish. I did not realize at the time that that was a bad idea. About an hour or so later, I returned to the kitchen and the mice looked like they had hardened well enough, so, I got out an empty cool whip container to put them in and set it on the table. I attempted to remove one of the mice from the dish and it wouldn’t move! The chocolate had stuck on to the tray! FIRETRUCK!!!!! I wound up totally mangling the cookies trying to move them from the tray to the empty cool whip tin! Mom came home, and by some miracle, she was able to salvage most of the mess and reshape it into mice, she then melted some more chocolate and coated each one and set them to dry on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. When they had set, they were easily removed from the parchment! No big mangled mess! Thank God for mothers!
A few days before Christmas, I got to do something that I’d never done before. I went mummering!! Mummering is a Newfoundland Christmas tradition where people dress up in ridiculous costumes (humps on their back, oversized bras on over their clothes, mittens on their feet and boots on their hands, lampshades on their head, etc.) and hide their faces and they go from door to door and they sing, dance and fool around with the people of the house. The homeowners have to try and figure out who the mummers are. I have lived in Newfoundland for my entire 21 years of life and I had never ever gone mummering! At the S.U.F Christmas party back on December 22nd, mummers always come and have a dance with the people in the audience! This year, they were minus a mummer as my friend Viola who was supposed to play one had hurt her back and couldn’t do it. They needed someone to fill in and I volunteered right away! I wore an aviator cap, one rainbow colored mitten, a red and black checkered shirt and a pink housecoat. I had an amazing time dancing with the mummers and the people in the audience as well! I hope to get to do it again next year!
Christmas day was wonderful. My niece and I woke up at around 7:30 and went out to the living room to see if Santa had come. The tree was full of presents! We were both so excited that he had been here and couldn’t wait to open our gifts. After breakfast, we all gathered in the living room to watch each other open presents.
I got many lovely things this year. One of my favorite gifts was “Streaking Kittens” an expansion pack for my Exploding Kittens game! I’m really looking forward to playing that with my friends at our next game night! I was also very happy to receive a good quality jump rope! What a wonderful surprise from Santa! For those of you who don’t know, I am on the CBS Special Olypics rhythmic gymnastics team. In our competition this year, one of our routines (set to Hannah Montanna’s “Hoedown Throwdown”!) uses a rope. I had been practicing with was a cheap one from Dollarama. It wasn’t quite my size and it was rather old and falling apart. The handle on the left hand side would often slip down the rope. I’m looking forward to practicing my routine with my new, blue, cord jump rope. Another very pleasant surprise was two new LEGO sets! I was very surprised as LEGO’s are quite expensive, I thought that if any I would only get one. I got the LEGO architecture Buckingham Palace set (England is on my bucket list and this is one landmark I would love to see if I ever have the chance to go!) and the new Diagon Alley set from the Harry Potter line (again, big fan of England and many things from that country, Harry Potter being one. I haven’t seen all the movies, but really enjoyed the ones I have seen.)
Another really cool gift was one that was for the whole family, a Google Home Mini! Thanks mom! It’s amazing the things that it can do! Tell you the weather, play the radio, answer any question you have! Poppy asked it how the Canadians did in their game the night before and it told him. His face lit up! He was absolutely amazed! My heart overflowed!
Speaking of Poppy, one of his gifts this year was all three seasons of “Mrs. Brown’s Boys” on DVD plus a collection of her Christmas specials! Poppy dies at her, I do too (just a quick note for the non-Newfies, saying you “dies at” someone means you find them absolutely hysterical, so much so you feel like you are going to die laughing!) A few days later we had such fun watching some of the Christmas specials! I hadn’t seen Poppy that happy or heard him laugh that much in a long time.
I spent New Year’s Eve at the S.U.F Hall in Topsail. They have a special open mic/ New Year’s Party every year. It’s so much fun to get together with all my friends from the S.U.F and ring in the New Year with music and dancing! No better way to end a year off in my opinion!
Now it’s 2019! So far this year, I’ve done some pretty awesome stuff! On Monday night, I went to the staff Christmas party at Spirit of Newfoundland! That was the best night of my year so far! Heck, it was one of the best nights of my life so far!
One of the activities we did at the party was a cooking contest! We were split up into three teams for this event. I was on a team with Dana Parsons, Erin Winsor, Kathie Hicks, Caroline and two guys whom I had never seen before (I assume they are new) whose names I’m not sure of (we unfortunately didn’t have a chance to introduce ourselves.) Then, each team went up to a table in the dining room. On each table was a different protein. Each team revealed what they had to work with. The white team got codfish, the yellow team got ground beef and my team got imitation crab. We then had 20 minutes to prepare hors d’oeuvres for 10 people using our protein.
I had an idea right away as to what to do with the crab and I shared it with my team. Get some mayo and celery and we’ll do a seafood salad! That’s exactly what we all did. I was in charge of chopping up the crab. I also fetched utensils, bowls, etc. when necessary.
We were close to finishing our salad when we had a few more ideas! There were some loaves of our homemade sourdough bread in the kitchen, so we grabbed one, cut it up into small pieces, threw some olive oil over it and baked them. Once they came out of the oven, we put a little bit of our salad on top of each one. We served it on a pretty silver tray with a red napkin on top. It looked really nice!
Dana also came up with an idea to make guacamole! She managed to whip that up really fast and get it into a bowl. Not long after she had the guacamole in the bowl, Adam the sound guy who was a competitor on the white team came over to our side of the kitchen. He looked at our guacamole, said “Wow! That looks amazing” and before anyone could stop him, he grabbed a chip, piled a mountain of guacamole on it and ran! I could not believe that he had just sabotaged us! Evil little firetrucker! Thankfully, Dana managed to make more just in time.
At the end of our 20 minutes, each team presented their dish. The white team had made a fish taco and the yellow team made burritos. They both looked really good! We were up against some pretty serious competition! In the end, by unanimous decision from the judges, the gold team won! Yay us!!! I was so proud of everyone on my team! I didn’t get a chance to sample the white team’s dish, but, after all was said and done I tried one of the yellow team’s burrito’s and it was absolutely delicious! Well done yellow team!
The best part of the night that night, hands down was the spontaneous karaoke dance party! After getting a drink from the bar, I popped in to the dining room to see what was going on and Adam was up on stage singing “Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm” by the Crash Test Dummies. I’d never heard him sing before. He was really good! As he sang, I started dancing, just kinda swaying to the music on my own. Janet saw what I was doing and asked me to dance with her, so I did! My heart overflowed with happiness as I danced with Janet!
We apparently have some very talented servers working at Spirit! Sarah and Caroline sang a few tunes and I thought they were awesome! I was really impressed with the girl who sang Blind Melon’s “No Rain”! Wow! With a voice like hers, she is really going to go places.
I never pass up an opportunity to sing for an audience, so I took a turn on the stage! I sang one of my go-to karaoke songs, Rod Stewart’s “The First Cut Is The Deepest”. I can’t even begin to describe how I felt in that moment, everyone was singing along, there was smoke pouring from the fog machine, Adam backing me up on drums, it was incredible!
We did a few group numbers at the end, those were two of my favorite performances of the night! We did Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” and Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline”! I loved it!
The biggest thing that’s happened to me so far this year was my return to the classroom! This week was my first full week of classes in the Early Childhood Education program at CONA. I fell behind and failed two courses during my first year (I was hospitalized thanks to my colon who didn’t seem to understand its job title as an internal organ! Read more about that here.) so I am back to do them over again! With hard work, determination and help from my best friend/tutor Peter, I’m confident that this time I will pass those two courses!
Now you’re up to speed! I look forward to seeing what the rest of this year will bring and sharing it with all of you!